Items tagged with Cloud

With Intel finding itself inside most of the world's consumer PCs and enterprise servers, it's begun making a massive push on making sure its chips wind up in all other devices - those that most of us regular folk don't think about. We're talking "edge devices" and "fog computing" hardware. "Edge devices" are those that connect all of our devices, so they can include routers, switches, and so forth. "Fog computing", by contrast, acts as decentralized resource management. An example of fog computing can be seen in Windows 10, which has the ability to serve updates to other PCs in a household or business. It's "fog" because it hovers around the given area, rather than "cloud", which would require... Read more...
In June of last year, Intel announced a $16.7B acquisition of chip designer Altera, a Silicon Valley bellwether known for producing FPGAs (Field Programmable Gate Arrays), PLDs (Programmable Logic Devices), Embedded Processors, and ASICs (Application Specific Integrated Circuits). At the time of the announcement, Intel CEO Bryan Krzanich said, “Intel’s growth strategy is to expand our core assets into profitable, complementary market segments. With this acquisition, we will harness the power of Moore’s Law to make the next generation of solutions not just better, but able to do more.” That’s a nebulous way of saying Intel had plans to leverage Altera technology to boost its own profits, which... Read more...
Following a few months of teasing, Microsoft has finally rolled out Windows 10 Enterprise E3, which can be purchased through its official Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) program. While enterprise-level software solutions are typically feared due to their expense, Microsoft is making the E3 cost-of-entry modest enough to make even small businesses consider making the switch. Microsoft is pricing Windows 10 Enterprise E3 at $7/mo, or $84/yr. While few enjoy the idea of a subscription-based OS, this is one of those products that could pay for itself over time. We're talking enterprise-level control and policies, and not to mention enterprise-level security. In its official blog post, Microsoft notes... Read more...
More details about a previously disclosed security breach at cloud storage provider Dropbox have come to light. The hack itself is old news—it occurred back in 2012—but what's new is how many users were affected by it. Hackers made off with details belonging to north of 68 million Dropbox users, prompting a mass password reset. The folks at Motherboard got their mitts on a sample of files containing email addresses and hashed passwords of users affected by the Dropbox hack. The information is contained in four files totaling about 5GB, with details of 68,680,741 accounts. Apparently a senior Dropbox employee confirmed with  the site that the info is real. It's a bit sobering to see so many... Read more...
There's a popular saying about procrastination that I'll tell you about later. In the meantime, here's a heads up that Microsoft has begun downgrading the free storage allotment of its OneDrive cloud service from 15GB to 5GB, just as the Redmond outfit said it would when it announced the impending reduction back in November of 2015. The reduction in free space was part of an overhaul to OneDrive that also saw the elimination of unlimited storage for Office 365 Home, Personal, and University subscribers. Microsoft was put off by a small number of people who used their unlimited OneDrive accounts to backup multiple systems, host DVR recordings, and even store entire movie collections. The OneDrive... Read more...
404: Weed not found? Not anymore, says Microsoft. Microsoft is turning some of those 404’s into 420’s. Microsoft is the first large corporation to jump into the legal marijuana market and the company just announced a partnership to begin offering software and services that track marijuana plants from “seed to sale.” The software is a new product in Microsoft’s cloud computing business. It is meant to help states that have legalized the medical or recreational use of marijuana keep track of sales and commerce. Microsoft will be partnering with Kind, the startup that initially developed the software. David Dinberg, the Founder and Chief Executive of KindKind is trying to take the marijuana... Read more...
Samsung recently acquired cloud-service company Joyent for an undisclosed sum. Joyent will continue to operate as a standalone subsidiary and provide infrastructure and software services to its customers. Samsung stated that it had looked at a number of cloud companies, but decided on Joyent because it has “an experienced management team with deep domain expertise and a robust cloud technology validated by some of the largest Fortune 500 customers.” Joyent will provide Samsung with its own cloud platform to support mobile, IoT and cloud-based software and services. Joyent claims to have pioneered cloud computing and one was of the first to embrace serverless computers, or “compute-centric object... Read more...
When we hear about IoT, or Internet of Things, it often relates to products like smart clothing, accessories or even home automation. But IoT can also play a major role in the enterprise space, as Microsoft has just confirmed with its acquisition of an Italian company called Solair. In its blog post, Microsoft notes that Solair is well-established in the IoT space, having established itself involved in manufacturing, retail, food, and transportation. One of the things that no doubt stood out to Microsoft most about Solair is the company's appreciation for its Azure cloud platform, as all of its products revolve around it. Solair CEO Tom Davis Microsoft provides a couple of examples of where Solair... Read more...
This isn't a perfect analogy, but imagine if Burger King approached McDonald's about storing and managing its inventory of beef patties, buns, condiments, cups, napkins, and so forth. That's sort of what's happening between Apple and Google, with the former becoming a customer of the latter's cloud platform.Apparently this was a deal Apple inked with Google last year, and since that time it's been able to reduce its reliance on Amazon Web Services to a large degree for its iCloud service. Apple hasn't completely severed its ties with Amazon, but at this point it's entrusting Google's cloud platform with iCloud much more than AWS.Knowledge of the deal was provided to CRN from "multiple sources,"... Read more...
Microsoft added to the frustration of some of its OneDrive and Office 365 users over the weekend when it accidentally capped their storage ceiling at 1TB. The lowered data cap caught the users off guard because Microsoft had previously promised a one-year grace period for users who were using more than 1TB. OneDrive has been an ongoing source of angst for some users over recent months. It dates back to when Microsoft announced that Office 365 subscribers would be allowed to use as much OneDrive storage as they wanted to, only Microsoft later went back on its word because it felt that a small number of users were abusing the benefit by uploading large libraries of videos. Those users were consuming... Read more...
Since Satya Nadella stepped into the role of Microsoft CEO, the company's outlook has been a lot more positive than it had been in recent years. As the company's latest financials highlight, the company's killing it where cloud services are concerned, and as we've reported a few times over the past year, its latest OS, Windows 10, has proven to be a grand success. When Microsoft unveiled its first cloud initiatives, many revolving around its Azure platform, it was hard to grasp just how important they'd become for the company. As we now see, and Nadella backs up, it's proving to be an extremely important market for the company. Nadella even uttered this bold statement, "The enterprise cloud opportunity... Read more...
One of the rumors buzzing around the tech world this morning was that IBM was in talks to acquire Ustream, a video streaming service claiming to have over 80 million viewers and broadcasters. Not long after rumors hit the web, IBM made it official, announcing that it now owns Ustream, which joins the company's newly formed IBM Cloud Video Services unit. IBM didn't disclose financial terms of the detail, though it did specify its motivation for doing the deal, which boiled down to a desire to extend its cloud platform and beef up its portfolio of video services that now spans open API development, digital and visual analytics, simplified management, and consistent delivery across global industries.... Read more...
In what Microsoft is pitching as a philanthropic play, the Redmond giant has committed to donating $1 billion worth of cloud services to university researchers and nonprofit organizations over the next three years. The investment is one piece of a three-part initiative to ensure that Microsoft's cloud computing resources ultimately serve the public good. Microsoft's effort is on a broad scale. In a related blog post, Microsoft President and Chief Legal Officer Brad Smith talks about cloud computing emerging as a vital resource for addressing the world's problems. "Cloud services can unlock the secrets held by data in ways that create new insights and lead to breakthroughs, not just for science... Read more...
With so many Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals out there, it can be tough to spot the gems. One that undoubtedly qualifies is Amazon's offer of unlimited cloud storage for a year for just $5, which is 92 percent less than the normal selling price of $59.99. If you're a digital pack rat, this is the score you've been looking for.The one-year plan offers unlimited storage for photos, documents, and whatever other files you need backed up to the cloud. There's no limit to what you can upload, and if you're a photographer, rest easy knowing your photos won't be tampered with -- Amazon says it will never change or reduce the resolution of uploaded images.Amazon Cloud Drive works on both desktop... Read more...
Microsoft saw a 12 percent year-over-year decline in revenue during the quarter ended September 30, 2015. On a GAAP basis, revenue for the quarter came in at $20.4 billion, along with operating income of $5.79 billion and net income of $4.62 billion, the latter of which is a 2 percent bump compared to the same quarter a year ago. Leveraging the cloud continues to pay off for Microsoft. Revenue related to the Redmond outfit's Intelligent Cloud division grew 8 percent to $5.9 billion for the quarter, while operating income jumped 14 percent to $2.4 billion. Microsoft also noted that its Azure revenue and compute usage more than doubled compared to last year."We are making strong progress across... Read more...
In the cloud game, there is so much competition, it's hard to keep them all straight sometimes. But of them all, two giants that are fun to watch duke it out are Google and Microsoft - especially when it comes to online documents. While Google was ahead of the curve with regards to hosting office tools online, Microsoft has arguably had an easier time selling its service based on the simple fact that it's been creating office tools for nearly thirty years (the first version was revealed at COMDEX in 1988!). Both companies have their own pluses, though, making it hard for some businesses to choose between them. Google clearly has mastered the art of infrastructure, while Microsoft offers tools... Read more...
We all recognize that backing up data is important, but do you have backups for your backups? A single scheme isn't always enough, and if you think uploading your valuable documents to the cloud is all the protection you need, think again. Some users are finding that out the hard way after one of Google's data centers was affected by four successive lightning strikes. Google says the incident occurred on August 13, 2015, which is when lightning exacted its wrath on the local utilities grid that powers the company's European data center. There was a brief loss of power to the data center's storage system that's used for what Google dubs the europe-west1-b zone.To keep users' data safe, Google... Read more...
In November, Amazon announced the latest addition to its hardware line-up, the Amazon Echo. The Echo smart speaker doubles as a digital assistant and home entertainment device. It’s an always-connected, always-available Siri or Cortana-like device designed for your home that can provide answers to common questions, play music, provide traffic updates, control your lights, read audiobooks, and much more. Because it’s tied to your Amazon account, the Echo can also be used to reorder products you’ve previously purchased from Amazon. Although the Echo was announced in November, it was available for purchase on an invite-only basis from Amazon. Seven months after it was announced, Amazon made its... Read more...
When Google announced in May that it was offering unlimited photo and video storage for free via its revamped Photos app, there was much celebration. Confetti poured out from building windows onto the streets, enemies became friends, and the nation's leaders declared and end to all conflicts, finally ushering in an era of world peace.Okay, maybe that's a bit of an exaggeration. However, what Google did was pretty awesome, and having an unlimited bin in the cloud was just part of the story. The retooled app made it even easier to organize your images and videos, tag people, and search through large libraries without needing to use complex terms and descriptors.Oh, but there was a catch, only we... Read more...
It’s long been said that Apple’s efforts to tackle “the cloud” have often come up short. Apple has seemingly struggled to get a firm grip on cloud data starting with iTools, which subsequently morphed into .Mac, MobileMe, and to its current incarnation as iCloud. In the past, Apple has rented server capacity from various vendors -- such as Amazon and Microsoft -- to support its cloud services like iCloud. In addition, Apple has taken the easy (but not always efficient) approach of using off-the-shelf hardware like Cisco switches and HP servers in its growing army of data centers. However, Apple is looking to take a page from the books of rivals like Amazon, Microsoft, and Google to bolster its... Read more...
Cloud gaming is a technology that's already here, but with high bandwidth requirements and data caps still a thing that mobile users have to contend with, there's definitely room for improvement. The question is, how? Researchers at Duke University and Microsoft Research have been working together to answer that very question, and what they've come up with is a promising new tool that could lead to console-like graphics on mobile devices with comparatively little bandwidth requirements. The tool is called "Kahawai," which is the Hawaiian word for stream. What Kahawai does is task the mobile device -- smartphone or tablet -- with generating a rough sketch of each frame in a game, or a few high-detail... Read more...
Data security research player CrowdStrike is reporting a security flaw that could allow hackers to exploit and take over data centers from within. Given the nasty moniker "VENOM" (for "Virtualized Environment Neglected Operations Manipulation"), the vulnerability CrowdStrike uncovered is present in a common component — a legacy floppy drive controller — that is widely used in virtualization platforms and appliances. The seriousness of the VENOM vulnerability rests on how it circumvents an essential barrier used by cloud service providers to segregate customer data. Thus, infiltrators who are able to gain access to one virtual environment can subsequently move from there into the cloud entity's... Read more...
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